Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

Remembering the servicemembers who died in the service of their country.

Army Sgt. Matthew L. Deckard

29, of Elizabethtown, Kentucky.
Deckard died in Baghdad, Iraq when an improvised explosive device detonated near his M1A1 Abrams tank during patrol operations. He was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 64th Armor Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Georgia. Died on September 16, 2005.

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"Fallen but never, never forgotten. You would be so proud of your family today."
David Anderson Cyclone 6 Ancient of Texas

"Matthew, you will never be forgotten. Your amazing kids would make you proud. I watch on Facebook as they grow...we are all amazed at their strength! But we know they got it from you. I thought this would get easier but it doesn't. See you on the Green!"
Cyclone 6 Ancient of Tear it up!

"Hey Matt, Its your sister. Its been 9 years since you've been gone. Somehow I found your memorials, rememberances, friends and family comments surfing the web tonight... I broke and told myself you could actually hear hear what I want to say to you at this point in my life. Matt mom left me too. I hope your up there taking care of her. I hate life without you and mom. I love and miss you guys so much..."
Michelle Best of Radcliff,Ky

"SGT Deckard, Although we have never met I wanted to let you know we have not forgotten you. I met your father today for a short but unforgettable talk. I felt like he is very proud of you as a son and a soldier. I cannot express the gratitude and admiration that myself and my fellow brothers and sisters in arms have for you and your uncle for both paying the ultimate sacrifice in defense of freedom and democracy around the world. May God help you watch over your family and help them to cope with your memory in a positive way. Thank you."
USN LT Everage of Borden, IN

"Yet another year...your kids are growing as I see the pictures on Facebook. They look like you. You would be proud. I, like many others will not forget. Cyclones!"
Cyclone 6 Ancient, David Anderson

"Eight years today.I think about you and your family often....Gone but NEVER forgotten."
Robert Drnek of Butler, PA

"Matt,
You are missed every day. You were a great Soldier. I regret my decision sending your platoon back...everyday. I know you are up there watching over your family. I think of you everyday. Seven years seems like yesterday to me."
Cyclone 6 Ancient of Ft. Hood

"Hello Baby Brother. Something made me go to your electronic memorial site to see if it was still up and going. I love you Matthew. I ride past you everyday and I turn my head and look in your direction everytime. The girls are growing up on me, I don't ever talk to Mike anymore, and me and mom hasn't spoke for almost two months....No matter if your here on Earth with me or in Heaven with Jesus, you bring back the meaning to "family" and the reminder is not surprising coming from you... I love and miss you Matt. See you in Heaven one day."
Matt's sister of Radcliff,Ky.

"To the Gill Family: Know that our hearts and prayers are with you in the loss of Matthew. Our son Pfc. Timothy J. Seamans, US Army, 3rd ID, 69AR, 1st BATL, Ft. Stewart, GA was KIA on August 18, 2005. I noticed that Matt was a member of the 3rd ID and was KIA on September 16, 2005 approximately 1 month after Tim. Tim's tree dedication was on September 18, 2005 just two days after Matt was killed in action. We know what you were going through because it was still early and fresh in our hearts and minds. I pray that you find peace as you continue your journey. I noticed that Matt's Dad is from Greenville, IN both my wife and I hail from Lafayette, IN. If any of you are planning on attending the Wreath4WarriorsWalk at Ft. Stewart on December 11, 2010 we would be honored to meet with you. May God continue to bless you always.

Dave and Monica Seamans"
Dave Seamans of Jacksonville, FL

"Matthew
We finally got to honor you the right way it took 5 years but we thought of you each and everyday. Angie moved you to ETown and she invited your Dad and Me and your Dad finally got closure Matt and he really misses you and I know you are sitting right next to the big man now and we are so proud of you and we will see you one day and I will give you the biggest hug.




d"
Dad and Cindy Deckard of Greenville,In.

"5 years,still seems like yesterday...even though I wish it didn't...I hope one day to understand the reason why things happen the way they do.....maybe next year I can convince myself there is one."
SSG Durst of E-town, KY...THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

"Sitting here thinking of you and your family.Thanks for your service for our country. I will always remember you."
Victoria of ky

"All gave some...some gave all

SPC David Harrison Ford IV 16 Sep 2005
SGT Matthew L. Deckard 16 Sep 2005
1SGT Alan N. Gifford 16 Sep 2005
SSG Paul R. Marek WIA 16 Sep 2005
SGT Victor M. Cortes III 29 May 2005
SGT Jerry L. Bonifacio Jr 10 Oct 2005
CPT Michael J. Mackinnon 27 Oct 2005
SPC Jose A. Rubio Hernandez 24 Mar 2008
SSG Christopher M. Hake 24 Mar 2008
PVT George Delgado 24 Mar 2008
PFC Andrew J. Habsieger 24 Mar 2008
SGT Steve A. McCoy 10 Jun 2008 WIA 23 Mar 2008
PV2 Joshua C. Schichtl WIA 06 Jan 2008
SFC Aaron D. Cornelius WIA 15 Apr 2008
SGT Mario A. Ojeda Jr WIA 05 May 2008

3rd Infantry Division
4th Brigade
4-64 Armor Battalion

You will NEVER be forgotten....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l7-ys7UaRRQ

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M0SAtlv7gtw"
armybeef68 of San Jose California

"Thank you for your service. You will never be forgotten."
j.d. boatright of jacksonville,fl

"Hey Matt,

Though it has been four years, it seems like only yesterday. As we visited your monument this morning we could feel your presence. As you know, so much has happened since that unforgettable day and over the past year, we know that you have had a hand in all the good that has come our way. John is here now as well as "Cap" and many of your other comrades. Though some have chose to forget and let memories of you slip silently into the night, you can be assured that we will never forget. We wish that you could have returned and followed thru with your plans. Man, the smile that we would have seen on your face! Anyways, bless you on this day and every day in the future. You are sadly missed but we know you are soaring high and forever free.
Always in our hearts and minds,never to be forgotten,we love you.

Mom, Dad & Lachelle"
Glenn & Cassie Gill of Elizabethtown, Ky

"Another year gone by...tomorrow is the end of year 4 without you. I will never forget."
MAJ A of Ft. Leavenworth

"Was thinking about you guys today. Mostly I think about the times you and I talked. Wish I could tell you how much it helped."
SGT Cassidy "Doc" of KMTB, Iraq

"Matthew,
You will never be forgotten...you live on until we meet at Fiddlers Green."
Cyclone 6 Ancient of Ft. Leavenworth

"Happy Birthday Matthew!! I love and miss you very much.
Love,
Mom"
Cassie Gill of E-town,Ky.

"So its taken me three years to write here for you. It was too hard before that. I pulled out our pictures of OIF I and OIF III. Both were in Kuwait - I do have some from Iraq. I was thinking about the time we spent driving and how well you did at that. I was thinking about how everytime I came back to the track you had something else for the crew, how you got it I never asked. I thought about how everyone else always came first with you. Mostly I think of you when we stepped off the plane after the first time back at Stewart. Too many people never met you, too many people never knew how great a man and Soldier you had become. To those of us that did - we miss you. See you in the next life my friend - see you in a better place."
Shannon Hume of Quantico, Va & Ft Stewart, Ga

"Dear Deckard, You will never be forgotten in my prayers. As I now think of you as one of my "GARDIAN ANGELS, along with 1SG Alan Gifford & SPC. David Ford. I need you to know that I lost my right arm,leg,ear & left thumb on that dreadful day. PLEASE, With the help of the LORD, give those, that are trying to develope the "Osseointegrated, Neuroprosthetic, LIMBS a blessing. So the LIMBS can become an Infection free reality, Making me "The Bionic Man". GOD BLESS YOU BROTHER!"
SSG Marek of Satellite Beach Fl.

"August 2, 2008
To the family of Sgt. Matthew L. Deckard:
Matthew gave the ultimate sacrifice and will be held in the hearts of Americans forever. I cannot and will not let our fallen heroes be forgotten. My deepest sympathy to you. "Some gave all."
Peggy Childers
"Don't Let The Memory Of Them Drift Away"
www.IraqWarHeroes.org"
Peggy Childers of Carson City, NV

"D,

You and I rode a million miles together in Iraq. We were just two Kentucky boys in a land far away from the bluegrass. We laughed and cried together and I know we will do so again. The world needs wonderful men like you, and it pains me everyday that you have gone. I cannot tell you the number of times I've bent down at your tree to say hello. I am a better man having known you and you will continue to live in my heart forever. Till we meet again ! Tuskers !"
LTC Ross Coffman

"I know thanks doesn't quite cut it...I wish I had more words but we both know how things coulda gone down several times now. It seems like you Thor and Bert run shifts pickin up my slack...I think it goes without saying the beers are on me when I get back...thanks brother"
SSG John Durst of COP Norris,Baghdad, Iraq

"To the family of:Matthew L. Deckard I am so sorry for the loss of your love one. My heart cries out for you in your grief. He died a hero defending freedom and we are so grateful for anyone defending our freedom.
Know that I am praying for the peace of God that surpasses all understanding for you and that one day we will all meet in Heaven where we will rest in the arms of Jesus.
If you need someone to talk to or someone to pray with please call my Pastor at Gateway Community Church, Reverand John Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd Covington Ga. 30016 Phone 770- 787- 1015 (fax)770-787-8215.Your friend in Jesus Christ, Polly Ballew"

"Hey Deckard, Bruce and I were talking about you and the family. We sure miss you. We have missed many of our "Tusker" friends. Far too many to write to on this website! It is hard to see the words we type through the blur of watery eyes. Duffy is in IRAQ again and I wanted to tell you to watch over him. Bruce medically retired shortly after we moved to FTLW,MO. We pray for you and your family all the time. You are missed and will always be in our thoughts and prayers. THANK YOU!"
Bruce & Nathalie of Ft Leonard Wood, MO

"I met Sgt Matthew Deckard in April 2003 in Baghdad when I was a reporter embedded with his unit. He was able and smart and friendly, but what really struck me was his compassion and kindness to the people he met - a quality that people don't necessarily expect from a soldier but that you find frequently among America's best. I was so sad to read of his passing and my heart aches for those he has left behind. He was a hero and I will be among those who remember him."
Jonathan Foreman of London, England

"Matthew thank you for the sacrifice you have done for me and my family,my friends and neighbor's,my city,my state,my country,The world that know's what F R E E D O M mean's. We recently completed a prayer/song titled "War Casualties Prayer for America" and can be downloaded at our website www.warcasualtiesprayerforamerica.com Thank You Matthew L.Deckard"
Fred Dominguez of San Antonio,Texas USA

"SGT DECKARD- IT WAS AN HONOR TO SERVE WITH YOU. YOU GAVE SO MUCH TO SO MANY AND I KNOW YOU ARE IN A BETTER PLACE NOW, YOU WILL ALWAYS BE REMEMBERED BROTHER... WE ALL MISS AND THINK OF YOU IN TUSKER-LAND.. YOU WILL NOT BE FORGOTTEN..

RESPECTFULLY-
SSG C. D CO 4-64 CAB"
SSG C. of FT CARSON CO 1-8 IN

"Thankyou, I am proud to have served with you. My prayers are with you family and loved ones."
SGT Collins, Edwin (Commo) of 5th Ranger Training Bn

"Dear Matthew,
Our church remembered your service and sacrifice for us yesterday during a special Memorial Day event. Everyone in our church (more than 5,600 people) took an American flag with the name of a fallen American soldier and planted it in a large field adjacent to our church, along a main road in Orlando. I was blessed to place your flag. I thank God for you and your sacrifice for our country, and I pray for your family as they mourn your absence. See you someday."
Shawn of Orlando, FL

"Matthew, This is your sister thinking of you today. Your birthday is coming up and I miss you so much. Matt the pain is so deep. Losing you is the deepest pain I've felt in my life so far. I hope you know and see that your sister is changing her life, tomorrow is not promised to me and I plan to make the best of what I have today. i look up to the heavens above and I can vision you looking down on me and I hope you look down with a smile. Matt I love and miss you so. so, much. Happy Birthday in God's beautiful heaven. Love your sister, Michelle"
Michelle of Radcliff

"Matthew, This is your sister thinking of you today. Your birthday is coming up and I miss you so much. Matt the pain is so deep. Losing you is the deepest pain I've felt in my life so far. I hope you know and see that your sister is changing her life, tomorrow is not promised to me and I plan to make the best of what I have today. i look up to the heavens above and I can vision you looking down on me and I hope you look down with a smile. Matt I love and miss you so. so, much. Happy Birthday in God's beautiful heaven. Love your sister, Michelle"
Michelle of Radcliff

"Matthew, This is your sister thinking of you today. Your birthday is coming up and I miss you so much. Matt the pain is so deep. Losing you is the deepest pain I've felt in my life so far. I hope you know and see that your sister is changing her life, tomorrow is not promised to me and I plan to make the best of what I have today. i look up to the heavens above and I can vision you looking down on me and I hope you look down with a smile. Matt I love and miss you so. so, much. Happy Birthday in God's beautiful heaven. Love your sister, Michelle"
Michelle of Radcliff

"SGT Deckard,

Wow, now it's my turn to send a message of remembrance, because everytime I see your name, I remember the day I reenlisted you so you would continue to serve this great nation. My thoughts and prayers continue to be with the beautiful family you left behind, and believe me, you will never be forgotten and will ALWAYS be in my heart. I deeply feel when we lose one of our own, and the day you left us, we lost three great Americans, (1SG Gifford, SPC Ford and you). We are going back to Iraq to continue to show that nation and the world that freedom isnt free. May God bless you always and forever and someday we will meet again. Thank you for your sacrifices, they will NEVER EVER be taken for granted."
SFC Quiles (BN Career Counselor) of Now in Fort Irwin, training for OIF V. From Ft. Stewart, GA

"I was stationed with SGT Deckard in 4-64 in the S-3 shop for about a year. He was a great man, and a great soldier, and he will be truly missed. He truly loved his family, and loved what he did. Thanks for all the memories, and thanks for everything."
SGT Casey J McGeorge of Fort Irwin, CA

"Hey man, we worked together briefly on your first tour of duty, and you are one of the guys I will remember forever... I cant believe i stayed back and you were lost, it kills me everyday.. brother i will fight for you every waking moment until its my time to meet you again. You are a true hero, join Joel and enjoy till we meet again"
SSG Klossner, Christopher J. of Ft. Bragg, NC

"See you at Fiddler's Green Matt.

TUSKERS"

"Dear Sgt, You were my Gunner when we shot Top Tank. We worked side by side on C-34 for a year. I wish now that i did not get out of the ARMY. Maybe i could of helped. You were the first person i thought of when the movie elizebethtown previewed. I will always remember you. Your old delta Vernon"
John Vernon of Reno,NV

"I stood behind a soldier today as he gave honor to Matthew; a silent observer of a loss too deep for words. In that same kind of quiet presence, I pray that the memory and honor of Matthew will continue to be held high, not only in your minds and hearts, but in the soul of a grateful America, and world. May Matthew's family and friends find his spirit of duty and sacrifice to be an example to follow, a conduit of solace, and a reservoir of honor."
Bruce Cochran of Seymour, IN

"I served with Matt in Iraq and will never forget the sacrifice he made so that my family will be safe from harm. My sincerest condolences go out to Matt's family."
Mark Macy of Port Orange, FL

"Yes, Matthew will be missed dearly! His family will, somehow, find the strength to go on. I pray for God to wrap his wife and children in his arms to help them through this, for their love for him and his for them was so unconditional. I pray that God will help comfort his mom and dad for I know how much they love him and how saddened they are to lose him so soon. I pray that no one forgets that Matt is a true hero, and I pray that God will help us all to cherish the memories we have of him.

Matt will always hold a special place in our hearts. I am proud to say he was a wonderful and caring soldier, friend, husband, daddy, son, brother, grandson, and nephew!"
Pam Johnson (Matt's Aunt) of Clinton, Illinois

"May you always know that we are proud of the sacrifice Matthew gave in honor of his country. My condolences to those who loved him so much."
Johnnie Ruth of Harlan, Ky

"To the family and loved ones of Sgt. Matthew Deckard:
I was so proud yesterday to be one of those who stood on the side of the roadway to pay honor to your loved one as the funeral procession went by. Matthew will always remain a hero in all our hearts for his sacrifice. Always remember that Matthew will never be truly gone because he will always remain your hearts."
Barbara Jones of Harlan, Kentucky

"To the Deckared family, I pray for your family that God gives you the strength and courage to face another day. Matthew was truly a hero. Thank you Matthew for serving your Country."
Karen of Harlan, Ky

"I cannot begin to imagine this great loss. You are all in my thoughts and prayers. I pray that God may give you the strength in this time of sorrow."
Becky of Temple, TX

"You have my deepest sympathy. This young man made the ultimate sacrifice to protect his country and fellow Americans. To that we should all be thankful and show our utmost respect and honor. God Bless His Loved Ones that remain to carry on without him. May you find comfort in the days ahead."
Elaine of Harlan, KY

"May God bless you and your family. You can be so very proud of this young man. He made the ultimate sacrifice for his country."
Nelson of Harlan, Ky. USA

"I just wanted to let you guys know that you are in my thoughts and prayers!"
Hannah of Harlan, KY

"TO THE DECKARD FAMILY FROM THE WAHL FAMILY. MATTHEW THANK YOU FOR SERVING OUR COUNTRY AND FOR BEING A MILITARY BROTHER TO OUR SON. SADLY, YOU BOTH HAVE GIVEN YOUR LIFE. AN IT WAS NOT IN VAIN MATTHEW. YOU HAVE ACCOMPLISHED, SO MUCH THAT MANY NEVER HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO DO. YOU HAVE TOUCHED THE HEARTS OF SO MANY! TO THOSE YOU HAVE. ALL HOLD VERY PRECIOUS MEMORIES. SHARED TOGETHER WITH YOU AMONG FRIENDS, THOSE IN YOUR COMMUNITY, NEIGHBOR'S, YOUR MILITARY FAMILY OF BROTHER'S, SISTER'S AND ESPECIALLY YOUR LOVING FAMILY. SO YOUNG YET SO BRAVE SO GIVEN AND A HERO! I DO KNOW ONE THING OF YOU MATTHEW! YOU ANSWERED THE CALLING THAT HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS DON'T! YOU ARE A SOMEONE'S SOMEONE AND SOMEONE TO OUR FAMILY! TO YOUR FAMILY: REACH OUT TO YOUR POLITICAL LEADER TODAY. TO HAVE A STREET DECIATED AFTER MATTHEW. HE DESERVE'S TO BE HONORED TODAY AND ALWAYS REMEMBERED NEVER TO BE FORGOTTEN. WAR'S AND CONFLICT TAKE'S YEARS TO END. WITH THAT SAID, ONLY TODAY ARE WE HONORING WWII, KOREAN AND VIETNAM VETERANS AND ALL THOSE THAT GAVE THE ULITMATE SCARIFICE. MATTHEW SERVED HIS COMMUNITY, COUNTY, STATE AND MORE IMPORTANTLY! HIS COUNTY THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA! MATTHEW YOU PLAYED A MAJOR ROLE TO STOP TERRORIST, TO GIVE OTHERS FREEDOM AND HOPE! MATTHEW YOU GAVE SO MUCH WITHOUT REALIZING. YOU ARE APART OF IRAQI, AMERICAN, AND WORLD HISTORY. NO ONE WANTS TO LOST A SOLDIER! MATTHEW MY TEARS HAVE NOT STOPPED FLOWING. AS IT DID FOR MY SON, IT DID FOR ALL OUR FALLEN AND YOU (MATTHEW) WE ALL DEAL WITH OUR LOST DIFFERENTLY. YOUR FAMILY IS NOT ALONE. I WAS WITH MY SON YESTERDAY. I SIT AND TELL HIM ANOTHER BROTHER AND OR SISTER WITH YOU NOW. YOU ALL TAKE CARE, FOR WE WILL NEVER FORGET ANY OF YOU AND WE LOVE YOU! GOD BLESS!"
leonard wahl of valley stream ny

"I led a large number of officers and enlisted Air Force in a hertfelt ceremony honoring you as your remains were loaded onto a C-130 for transport home. We thanked God for your life and service. We prayed for all those who mourn your loss. It was a deeply sincere moment for all involved.
- God's grace to you and yours"
Cody Broussard, Chaplain USAF of Sather Air Base, Baghdad

"We Will NEVER FORGET !"
Please KNOW so many people share your sadness,
and we are remembering your family in your loss and your deep grief.
Our nations HERO, Matthew will be remembered by name.
Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
God Bless you ALWAYS.
Pat & Sandi Breckenridge from Montana "

"To the Deckard Family, I wish to extend to you my deepest condolences. Your Matthew will always be remembered and honored. He is a true American Hero. We are praying for you all. God Bless you all and God Bless Matthew."
Mary Ghaney of Brooklyn, New York

"I am truly sorry for your loss. May God give you the strength and courage to face the days ahead.

Michele Carter
Sister of CPL Gary Walters
KIA in Baghdad, 24 April 2005"

"Thank you Matthew Deckard, you will not be forgotten. Your bravery goes beyond words. I want to express my deepest gratitude for your sacrifice. To the family and friends, my prayers and deep condolences in your loss. May God strengthen you from knowing that fellow Americans and people around the world care about you and grieve with you in your loss. God bless you all. A very appreciative fellow American,"
Leo Titus of Grayslake, Illinios

"To the family and friends of Sgt. Matthew Deckard:
May God's grace be with you during your time of grief. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and we feel your loss and share in your sorrow. Bless Matthew for the sacrifice he has made to make a better life for the rest of us."
The Ford Family of Wells, Nevada

"To the family and friends of Sgt. Matthew Deckard:
I am saddened by the loss of your loved one. He will always be remembered as a hero for fighting for freedom. I hope that this website will be a source of comfort and encouragement for you during this difficult time, and in the future as you recall the memories of Matthew, who continues to live on in your heart."
Tim Rivera of Powder Springs, Georgia

Honor them by remembering... Freedom - is their gift to us But his soul goes marching on